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Old 27th November 2018, 11:09 PM   #1
Ranb
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When Your Meth is Actually Candy.

A woman was jailed for 3 months because police thought her cotton candy was meth.
https://www.cnn.com/2018/11/27/us/co...rnd/index.html
Quote:
According to the lawsuit, Fincher was a passenger in a car that was pulled over by two Monroe County Sheriff's deputies on December 31, 2016.
The deputies initially said they stopped the car because they thought the tinting on the car's windows was too dark, but clarified at the scene that it was not a violation.
Okay, maybe they were searching for a reason to search the car?

Quote:
They asked the driver if they could search the vehicle and soon found "a large, open clear plastic bag which contained a light blue substance, spherical in shape," in the car's floorboards, the lawsuit says.
I don't like blaming the victim, but. Never allow the police to search your car/house/person without a warrant.

Quote:
Fincher and the driver both explained it was just a bag of blue cotton candy. But the deputies decided to test it using a field test kit, which indicated the 1.5-ounce wad of blue fluff contained methamphetamine.
Yeah, the good ol field test kit.

Eventually other tests indicated no drugs and they let her out of jail after another few weeks.

Quote:
CNN has contacted Sirchie Acquisition Company, the distributor of the drug test the officers used, but has not received a reply.
And I doubt they ever will.

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Old 27th November 2018, 11:16 PM   #2
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Cotton-candy meth - that's a new one on me.
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Old 27th November 2018, 11:25 PM   #3
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Three months for cotton candy.

I guess this proves that law enforcement is our friend, and that as long as you follow the law you are never ever going to get screwed over. Yay!

Cotton candy. Three months. Locked up in a cell.
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Old 28th November 2018, 12:05 AM   #4
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What happened to the Cotton Candy?
Is it alright?
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Old 28th November 2018, 02:12 AM   #5
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I remember Aaron Paul eating a lot of the "blue sky" On the set of breaking bad.
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Old 28th November 2018, 02:38 AM   #6
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Sounds like they need to get a new field testing kit from a new company. If the one they have is giving false positives, then they are going to be looking at a lot of cases going down the toilet, even genuine ones.
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Old 28th November 2018, 03:15 AM   #7
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Reminds me of training officers as "experts" on recognizing drug impairment.

https://www.11alive.com/article/news...r/85-437061710
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Old 28th November 2018, 05:01 AM   #8
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- Your windows are too tinted.

- No, they're not

- Oh, so I see. Well, since I'm here, let me search our car anyway...


I discover that there are a suprising number of videos on the internet with this narrative. A refusal to allow a search of the vehicle is met with 'you want me to get the dog' and an implicit threat of a four hour wait followed by the arrival of a dog desperate to please its handler.
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Old 28th November 2018, 05:40 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by 3point14 View Post
I discover that there are a suprising number of videos on the internet with this narrative. A refusal to allow a search of the vehicle is met with 'you want me to get the dog' and an implicit threat of a four hour wait followed by the arrival of a dog desperate to please its handler.
In my experience, they just call the dog and threaten to impound. Then they whisper sweet words like "let me know if there is anything in the car, the dog will find it and then there is nothing I can do". Nope. Followed by "if I find anything at all you are going down". And then the classic, "the dog is indicating everywhere".

I've had a few people's lifetimes worth of searches, and I have never had an officer's dog fail to indicate in my car. Also, I've never figured out how each one was indicating, since they all acted different.
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Old 28th November 2018, 05:58 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by rdwight View Post
In my experience, they just call the dog and threaten to impound. Then they whisper sweet words like "let me know if there is anything in the car, the dog will find it and then there is nothing I can do". Nope. Followed by "if I find anything at all you are going down". And then the classic, "the dog is indicating everywhere".

I've had a few people's lifetimes worth of searches, and I have never had an officer's dog fail to indicate in my car. Also, I've never figured out how each one was indicating, since they all acted different.
The problem with drug dogs is that the police don't really care if they are accurate. The police want to search a vehicle and the dog is a pretense for probable cause. The dogs learn (or are taught, if you want to be cynical) that their handlers want a hit and they provide it. It doesn't really matter if it's a false positive, because what the police want is the search, not accuracy. If you want to be extremely cynical, the handler can just lie and say the dog alerted and there's not much that can be done to refute such a lie.


The sloppiness of these methods are extremely blatant. Studies have found that drug dogs are more accurate when the handlers are properly blinded, and much worse when the handlers have suspicions where the drugs are. It's quite clear that the dogs perceive their handler's suspicions, heavily biasing the dog and increasing false positives.

In situations where accuracy is actually desirable, like for explosive smelling dogs, the dogs perform much better. The handlers don't want false positives, so it happens less. Of course, I'm not aware of any requirement for any record keeping of false positives, so challenging such "evidence" in court is nearly impossible. Records aren't kept and you can't question a dog on the witness stand. It's a perfect probable cause black box for the police. We may as well bring back spectral evidence. One of the dogs referenced in my article below had an alert rate of 93% and an accuracy rate of 59%.

If someone invented a mechanical sniffer that was as sensitive as a dog's nose, never produced false positives, was cheaper, and easier to use than a drug dog, I suspect police would hate it. It would reduce their ability to conduct illegal searches.

The courts have been terrible on this flagrant workaround of the 4th amendment.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...=.307fa7d49f42
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Old 28th November 2018, 06:27 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by rdwight View Post
In my experience, they just call the dog and threaten to impound. Then they whisper sweet words like "let me know if there is anything in the car, the dog will find it and then there is nothing I can do". Nope. Followed by "if I find anything at all you are going down". And then the classic, "the dog is indicating everywhere".

I've had a few people's lifetimes worth of searches, and I have never had an officer's dog fail to indicate in my car. Also, I've never figured out how each one was indicating, since they all acted different.
Did the searches come up empty or was there actually contraband in the car?
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Old 28th November 2018, 06:37 AM   #12
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Should’ve called the thread: Driving with Cotton Candy While White
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Old 28th November 2018, 07:20 AM   #13
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I can't wait for the race crap in the thread titles to go out of fashion on this forum.
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Old 28th November 2018, 07:21 AM   #14
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"Held for two weeks AFTER the negative lab result came back on the meth". "Refused medical care for a broken hand and ovarian cyst". "Missed daughter's miscarriage and birth of grandsons". Presuming theses allegations are true, I hope the police department spends the next decade paying for this.
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Old 28th November 2018, 07:30 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Shadowdweller View Post
"Held for two weeks AFTER the negative lab result came back on the meth". "Refused medical care for a broken hand and ovarian cyst". "Missed daughter's miscarriage and birth of grandsons". Presuming theses allegations are true, I hope the police department spends the next decade paying for this.
The only reason this is newsworthy is that the woman was innocent. The general population is fine with the idea that jails neglect inmates under their care and that the criminal justice system is a soul crusher.

This whole story highlights many inadequacies with the criminal justice system. Poor evidence standards, poor bail standards, long processing times, and prisoner neglect while in custody.
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Old 28th November 2018, 07:45 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Ranb View Post
I can't wait for the race crap in the thread titles to go out of fashion on this forum.
Seconded. But just for giggles, imagine if this woman...was black. Dear god, the SJWs would be howling from the rooftops and championing it as an undeniable example of racism.

But no. It's just cops being cops.
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Old 28th November 2018, 07:52 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by CaptainHowdy View Post
Did the searches come up empty or was there actually contraband in the car?
No, never anything in the car. Though at least half I would call justified searches in that the car/myself could have smelled like weed or my eyes could be red. Still the actual search itself and use of dogs never seemed like more than a tactic used to hassle or encourage a confession. The dogs never came up empty in that they always were indicating everywhere, but there was never anything to find. Of all the times I will say I never had my trunk searched or my shoes, which I found odd. I use to be kind of a dick to cops so it came with the territory.
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Old 28th November 2018, 07:56 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
The only reason this is newsworthy is that the woman was innocent. The general population is fine with the idea that jails neglect inmates under their care and that the criminal justice system is a soul crusher.

This whole story highlights many inadequacies with the criminal justice system. Poor evidence standards, poor bail standards, long processing times, and prisoner neglect while in custody.
I think majority of people have issues with the system in regards to the hilited portion. Prisoner care though seems to be where the compassion ends.
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Old 28th November 2018, 08:01 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
The only reason this is newsworthy is that the woman was innocent. The general population is fine with the idea that jails neglect inmates under their care and that the criminal justice system industry is a soul crusher.

This whole story highlights many inadequacies with the criminal justice system industry. Poor evidence standards, poor bail standards, long processing times, and prisoner neglect while in custody.
FTFY

"Criminal justice" is an industry with it's own lobbyists and paid for politicians.
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Old 28th November 2018, 08:04 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by rdwight View Post
No, never anything in the car. Though at least half I would call justified searches in that the car/myself could have smelled like weed or my eyes could be red. Still the actual search itself and use of dogs never seemed like more than a tactic used to hassle or encourage a confession. The dogs never came up empty in that they always were indicating everywhere, but there was never anything to find. Of all the times I will say I never had my trunk searched or my shoes, which I found odd. I use to be kind of a dick to cops so it came with the territory.
Similar search tale: When I was young and driving a work/surfboard carrying van, with long hair and all that, cops once asked 'mind if we take a look in back?'
I had nothing to hide, so I said 'sure, you can look'.

Imagine my surprise when I found out what I had consented to. Every single box of nails, screws, tools, everything, dumped on the shoulder of the road. Finding nothing, I got a smirk and 'Have a nice day', and off they went, leaving me with hours of clean up.

And cops don't understand why people don't trust them.
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Old 28th November 2018, 08:06 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Thermal View Post
Seconded. But just for giggles, imagine if this woman...was black. Dear god, the SJWs would be howling from the rooftops and championing it as an undeniable example of racism.

But no. It's just cops being cops.
More cops just being cops, they always arrest the innocent good samaritan rather than deal with the drunk person they were called for. That is policing 101 after all.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/dc-md...=.3339af631eea

This is why you should never help anyone passed out in the street, the cops hate that crap and will arrest you for it.
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Old 28th November 2018, 08:25 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by Thermal View Post
Similar search tale: When I was young and driving a work/surfboard carrying van, with long hair and all that, cops once asked 'mind if we take a look in back?'
I had nothing to hide, so I said 'sure, you can look'.

Imagine my surprise when I found out what I had consented to. Every single box of nails, screws, tools, everything, dumped on the shoulder of the road. Finding nothing, I got a smirk and 'Have a nice day', and off they went, leaving me with hours of clean up.

And cops don't understand why people don't trust them.
I previously lived along a major North-South interstate highway that was a popular trucking route, both for legal and illegal goods. The state and local police would occasionally make a big show of force doing drug enforcement, making big press releases about all the drugs seized and arrests made.

I found the whole thing pretty gross. I'd see them digging through people's cars and luggage on the side of the road in the early hours of the morning or late at night. Bunch of guys in their dress up gear, tactical vests and blacked out SUV's with dogs. I passed family of four on the side of the road they left with their many suitcases open on the road shoulder for them to pack back up after they didn't find anything.

Real American heroes, that lot.
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Old 28th November 2018, 09:21 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
I previously lived along a major North-South interstate highway that was a popular trucking route, both for legal and illegal goods. The state and local police would occasionally make a big show of force doing drug enforcement, making big press releases about all the drugs seized and arrests made.

I found the whole thing pretty gross. I'd see them digging through people's cars and luggage on the side of the road in the early hours of the morning or late at night. Bunch of guys in their dress up gear, tactical vests and blacked out SUV's with dogs. I passed family of four on the side of the road they left with their many suitcases open on the road shoulder for them to pack back up after they didn't find anything.

Real American heroes, that lot.
Yep. We had a 'Cocaine Alley' that ran from Florida to Jersey that the cops would put a similar show on. I think they had figured out that the Pagans would have one clean-cut looking male driver and his 'wife' in a Toyota Corrola with a 'Baby on Board' yellow thing to mule the stuff up here (I was told that even being a Japanese car was important, since bikers shun imports). Lots of moms and dads caught up in that. I recall that kids were supposed to be the passport though. Even the Pagans wouldn't put kids in the car, knowing what might happen.
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Old 28th November 2018, 10:54 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by Ranb View Post
...
I don't like blaming the victim, but. Never allow the police to search your car/house/person without a warrant.
..
I think this would be better stated as "never give your consent for the police to search without a warrant." The police may well search without your consent, and you would be ill-advised to try to prevent them from doing so but if you state that you don't consent, you have a good chance of getting anything they find excluded at trial, and pretty much no chance if you do consent.

Also, I find it odd that police are required, in most cases, to explicitly advise you of your fifth amendment right to remain silent in an interrogation, but not of your fourth amendment rights regarding searches. "Consent" to search often comes down to something like.

"Do you have any drugs in the car?"

"No."

"Mind if I take a look?"

"Go ahead".

This case also illustrates that the foolishness of the notion that if you have nothing to hide, you might as well let them search.

I also wonder why they would think that cotton candy is meth. I've never heard of meth being produced in such a form, but, I can't say I know all that much about that topic.

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Old 28th November 2018, 11:04 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Shadowdweller View Post
"Held for two weeks AFTER the negative lab result came back on the meth". "Refused medical care for a broken hand and ovarian cyst". "Missed daughter's miscarriage and birth of grandsons". Presuming theses allegations are true, I hope the police department spends the next decade paying for this.
The maker of the "field test kit" should pay lots of damages too. Of course, the two and a half month delay in testing the "evidence", the two week delay in releasing her after getting negative results and the lack of proper medical care are all on government entities.
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Old 28th November 2018, 11:15 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by CORed View Post
I also wonder why they would think that cotton candy is meth. I've never heard of meth being produced in such a form, but, I can't say I know all that much about that topic.
Old cotton candy doesn't look "cottony" and instead looks like a colored crystalline glob. That can happen pretty quickly depending on the ambient temperature and humidity.
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Old 28th November 2018, 11:22 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by CORed View Post
I think this would be better stated as "never give your consent for the police to search without a warrant." The police may well search without your consent, and you would be ill-advised to try to prevent them from doing so but if you state that you don't consent, you have a good chance of getting anything they find excluded at trial, and pretty much no chance if you do consent.
Good clarification.

My kids received a good lesson in this at their high school. Drug dogs were doing a sweep of the parking lot and targeted one car in particular. They asked the kid for permission to search and the kid said no. Kid went home and cleaned the car top to bottom. Next day cops show up with a warrant and still found some stash that the kid missed.

My kids: Walk your lazy stoner ass to school if you know the cops are waiting with a warrant.

Me: And?

My kids: Never consent to a search. Come on dad how many times do we have to repeat that?

Me: Every time.
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Old 28th November 2018, 11:24 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by CORed View Post
I think this would be better stated as "never give your consent for the police to search without a warrant."
PSSSST. Only guilty people with something to hide would do that.

*For the record, that was sarcasm.*
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Old 28th November 2018, 11:36 AM   #29
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Well cops managed to top this one from a few years ago.

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/...n_5909616.html

That was held in jail for a month for spaghettios they thought were meth.
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Old 28th November 2018, 11:38 AM   #30
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Sugar testing as meth is not something people are unaware of.

https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20...etamines.shtml

It is a sad sad day for american policing when cops mistake donuts for meth.
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Old 28th November 2018, 11:38 AM   #31
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*Confused* What do these cops thing meth is?
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Old 28th November 2018, 12:03 PM   #32
Trebuchet
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
*Confused* What do these cops thing meth is?
An excuse to target people they don't like, mostly. And they don't CARE if the tests are inaccurate. They'll buy the brand that lets them make the most arrests.
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Old 28th November 2018, 12:44 PM   #33
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Back when my brother got his first car he was pulled over 19 times in six months, after which he got rid. Each time the cop had an excuse (didn't indicate, appearing overloaded, driving too fast - but not fast enough for a ticket). They routinely went through the car without permission, picking things up and sniffing them and generally tyre kicking. They never found anything but no doubt if there had have been something they couldn't immediately identify he'd have been carted off for it. Turns out that the car had a drugs marker on it from a previous owner but the police were too stupid or too lazy to update their records. I could understand it if my brother was black but he's whiter than a corpse.
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Old 28th November 2018, 12:48 PM   #34
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There are more than a few cases in which people have even confessed in a plea bargain to possession of an illegal drug after a false positive field test. They knew that the substance was actually legal (e.g. breath mint crumbs). They told the police as much, and at first they repeatedly stated their innocence. But ultimately they were worn down abd convinced to admit to a low-level possession charge (often by their public defender) in a plea bargain rather than risk a conviction on a much more serious felony. The choice of quickly accepting probation, even though innocent, versus an expensive, lengthy, embarrassing trial and a possible multi-year sentence can be very attractive.

Actual lab tests of the substance were never performed, or if performed, never revealed to the accused.

Particularly sadly, many of these people later discover that confessing to even a low level drug offense can have life long dreadful consequences for their ability to obtain employment, find housing,obtain loans, enroll in certain educational programs, apply for government benefits, etc.
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Old 28th November 2018, 12:59 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Ranb View Post
I can't wait for the race crap in the thread titles to go out of fashion on this forum.
I just hate these constant reminders that police target minorities disproportionately, I'd rather be able to never think about it.
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Old 28th November 2018, 12:59 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by PhantomWolf View Post
Sounds like they need to get a new field testing kit from a new company. If the one they have is giving false positives, then they are going to be looking at a lot of cases going down the toilet, even genuine ones.
Field testing kits are notoriously inaccurate, and dogs alert whenever their handlers tell them to.
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Old 28th November 2018, 01:36 PM   #37
William Parcher
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Originally Posted by rdwight View Post
No, never anything in the car. Though at least half I would call justified searches in that the car/myself could have smelled like weed or my eyes could be red. Still the actual search itself and use of dogs never seemed like more than a tactic used to hassle or encourage a confession. The dogs never came up empty in that they always were indicating everywhere, but there was never anything to find. Of all the times I will say I never had my trunk searched or my shoes, which I found odd. I use to be kind of a dick to cops so it came with the territory.
Yeah, I would expect the dog to alert if weed had fairly recently been smoked in that car. The oils are pretty persistent and the dog has smelling abilities which go way beyond any human.

I don't think there is any distinction or indication of a dog alerting because of "smoked in that car three days ago" versus "there is a pound of weed under a seat right now".
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Old 28th November 2018, 02:58 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by 3point14 View Post
- Your windows are too tinted.

- No, they're not

- Oh, so I see. Well, since I'm here, let me search our car anyway...


I discover that there are a suprising number of videos on the internet with this narrative. A refusal to allow a search of the vehicle is met with 'you want me to get the dog' and an implicit threat of a four hour wait followed by the arrival of a dog desperate to please its handler.
If the person is black, well the police just shoot them on the spot, seeing as they have 3/5ths the rights of a white man.
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Old 28th November 2018, 03:28 PM   #39
Steve
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Originally Posted by William Parcher View Post
Yeah, I would expect the dog to alert if weed had fairly recently been smoked in that car. The oils are pretty persistent and the dog has smelling abilities which go way beyond any human.

I don't think there is any distinction or indication of a dog alerting because of "smoked in that car three days ago" versus "there is a pound of weed under a seat right now".
A little off topic - Seems you can't "untrain" a cannabis dog. All these dogs in Canada are now being retired to a life of leisure
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Old 28th November 2018, 03:39 PM   #40
William Parcher
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Originally Posted by Steve View Post
A little off topic - Seems you can't "untrain" a cannabis dog. All these dogs in Canada are now being retired to a life of leisure
One of the most common forms of "alert" is for the dog to sit. They actively move around sniffing and then suddenly just stop and sit.

The Canadian dogs are going to do a lot of sitting if the odor is everywhere.
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